Fast and steady, with a split personality to enhance your driving pleasure

Whether on the daily commute or powering along back roads at leisure, Audi’s RS5 is exemplary

05 September 2021 - 18:39

You can’t have a discussion about high-performance Audi models without referencing the one that started it all. Quattro, the Italian word for the number four, adorned the backside of its boxy coupé that made its debut at the Geneva motor show in 1980. It was a game-changer for the brand: while peers went the rear-wheel drive route, Audi wanted to give its customers four-wheel drive traction, the promise of confidence in every conceivable weather setting.

And then the manufacturer took it racing. Forget pursuits on smooth, predictable tarmac. Audi forged its reputation for competition in the most gruelling terrain of them all: rallying. In 1981 the Quattro made its World Rally Championship (WRC) debut in Monte Carlo. In autumn that year, one of the rounds was won for the first time ever by a female driver, Michèle Mouton, campaigning the Audi in San Remo. The Quattro was taken to the Pikes Peak Hillclimb, where, in 1987, Walter Röhrl became the first to nail the ascent in less than 11 minutes...

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